Wednesday, March 30, 2011

News and Notes: Wednesday Edition

Below, some news and notes for Wednesday...
  • We just heard that Cornell fans can expect to see modified uniforms for the Big Red in 2011-2012. Above, a look at some of Cornell's jerseys during the last 113 years of Cornell basketball.
  • Here is a little bit of early discussion on the upcoming season. With Cornell finishing 6-3 down the stretch during 2010-2011, losing only to the co-league champions, Princeton and Harvard, there is no reason to dismiss Cornell as a title contender entering 2011-2012. The Big Red return the bulk of the team's nucleus from last season and bring in the program's most decorated recruiting class since 1994. But even more important, Cornell became a better team as the year progressed during 2010-2011 as the team adjusted to the new new system installed under new head coach Bill Courtney.
  • In the news, The Dartmouth writes, "The Princeton University men’s and women’s basketball teams earned bids to this year’s NCAA tournament. The 14-seeded Tigers men’s squad lost to four-seeded University of Kentucky on a last-second shot in the first round of the big dance by a score of 59-57, as reported by Last year, the Cornell University men’s team advanced to the Sweet Sixteen round before falling to Kentucky, 62-45."
  • Louis Dale ('10) and his Goettingen club of Germany's premier league, the Bundesliga, face Italy's Benetton Treviso today in the quarterfinals of the EuroCup.
And just when you thought there was no more basketball being played at Cornell's Newman Arena...


Anonymous said...

Yes, realistically, Cornell will be in the 2011-12 title chase along with Columbia, Harvard, Penn, Princeton, Yale, and probably, Brown. What a scramble!

While Harvard looks good on paper, they have developed a nasty habit of kicking away big leads late in important games, and then getting squashed convincingly in the post-season. This trend, whatever its genesis, gives coninuing hope to the other league members.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Coach Courtney that Harvard is the favorite next year, if not the prohibitive favorite. They lose nobody to graduation from a co-champion team and have by far the best class of freshmen coming in. Kenyatta Smith and Keith Wright will be a frontcourt duo the likes of which have not been seen in the Ivy League in a long, long time.

Harvard will go from still looking for their first NCAA appearance in the modern era (back in 1946, the NIT was actually the preferred post-season tournament) directly to being the overwhelming favorite in 2012. That's do not pass Go; proceed directly from Mediterranean Avenue to Boardwalk.

The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

Cornell's frontline of 2009-2010 was better than anything Harvard can put together because the Big Red had a monster seven-footer, in addition to Coury and Tyler and Wittman.

Nevertheless, Harvard is going to have a dynamite team next year and will be the favorite led by their seniors.

It is way too early to judge Cornell.

There were major two weakness for the Big Red last year:

(1) A point guard that could create off the dribble and get into the lane and take pressure of Wroblewski


(2) A post presence that could defend the goal.

Cornell may have found recruiting pieces to address those needs.

Don't be surprised if some freshmen play major minutes for Cornell.

Anonymous said...

Just can't get excited...

-about the chance that a Cornell freshmen is going to play a major role for the Big Red next year. It seems like we hear this every year... and even in a year when the Red graduated eight seniors, the frosh couldn't get on the floor. It's a huge jump in level of play.
Only ten frosh in the whole league averaged even double-digit minutes, and only four of those really contributed. Wrobo, Ferry, Groebe, Peck, and Gray in the backcourt, and Chemerinski, Figini, and Gatlin upfront, were at the heart of that 6-3 run that followed Cornell's 0-5 league start. As you say, our returnees are not really a 10-18 team. They are a 6-3 team with a legitimate claim to being the "best of the rest," the year after the program was in the Sweet Sixteen. You can bet that nucleus of eight is not going to take kindly to anyone swiping their jobs.

-about Harvard as the favorite when they haven't yet won anything. No opposing coach or player is going to say what is all too apparent to real Ivy fans. Harvard squandered a couple chances to sew up an NCAA bid this year. Then they embarrassed themselves and the league with the ill-advised chatter surrounding an at-large bid and the poor showing in Stilwater.

When the chips are down, the Crimson's game belongs in an alley behind the Water Works. Time to do it on the court.

The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

Nobody talked about last year's freshmen earning major minutes.

Anonymous said...

hallelujah on the new uni's. please make them the best uni's in the ivy league.

Anonymous said...

who cares about the uniforms, I want to get back to the NCAA's

Anonymous said...

We heard a lot about Peck when he came in and got to play 8min a game on the sweet 16 team, as much as it is hard to expect anything from freshman I think at least one of the freshman should be able to play consistent minutes if this class is as good as advertised

The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

Heard that as many as 5 freshmen can see minutes with 2-3 of them virtual locks to play right away in the top 10 of the rotation.

Anonymous said...

"Top Ten of the rotation?" Ten? The only Ivy team that had anything resembling a 10-man rotation last year was Columbia. The Lions' injury troubles probably caused that level of chaos/desperation in the lineup and their late-season swoon.

A few other teams, including the Red, played nine. The others played eight, including Princeton with eight and Harvard with six. Winning teams, apart from foul trouble and injury, tend to stick to a disciplined rotation of 7-8 guys so the combinations have time to become familiar with each other.

What are you saying? If Cornell is planning or somehow ends up with a 10-man rotation, it's not the usual formula for a winning team. What do you know?

The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

What are you talking about? Cornell played as many as 12-13 guys in some games last year.

Anonymous said...

Sure, I remember a few 12-13 player games. Experimentation is necessary at some point, particularly for last year's Red. 12-13 was never a habit.

It is who the coaches settled on... and who ended up with the minutes showing in the end that was ultimately important for the run of success at the end of the year.

The nine guys with meaningful minutes (in time order) last year were Wrobo, Ferry, Peck, Wire, Coury, Groebe, MAA, Gray, and Aro.

If you add Chemerinski, Figini, and Gatlin, and remove Wire, Coury, Aro, and make MAA a defensive specialist, you've got the bulk of a reasonable eight-man rotation that experienced both playing time and success down the stretch in February.

Hey, I'm on your side here. It's one of the league's better returning full rotations. If a couple of the current sophs or the frosh can steal time from members of this group, they will have to be darn good and Cornell will be most fortunate. Teams win more often with a steady 7-8-man rotation than with a steady ten-man rotation.

The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

Bill wants to pressure the ball more and play harder and faster. You can't do that with 8 kids. The rotation will likely be closer to 12, as it was all of last year.

Find a game where just 8 guys played, it just didn't happen.

And you forgot to list Matthews, a starter down the stretch.